Kaijumax 2 (May 2015)

Kaijumax #2

Kaijumax is something else. It’s so uncomfortable. This issue’s entirely about the corrupt prison guards exploiting the prisoners. Oh, and there’s something with the giant goat monster being in tune with the mountains. It’s unclear where it’s going to go. And there’s a little with the protagonist kaiju bonding with one of the okay prison guards.

But it’s mostly just the bad Ultraman guy shaking down prisoners and abusing them, all while the humans joke about sending them to extinction. And Cannon’s art is so jovial and friendly, it makes Kaijumax such an uncomfortable read.

Cannon’s almost entirely past the “Monster Island as a prison” gimmick just because the evil acts of the humans does so much to, well, humanize the monsters. They’re not just caricatures, the personalities he’s giving them are rather affecting.

The issue doesn’t have much of an ending, which would be nice. It’s still real good.


Ten Thousands Years to Life; writer, artist and letterer, Zander Cannon; editor, Charlie Chu; publisher, Oni Press.

Cluster 6 (August 2015)

Cluster #6

I wish I enjoyed Cluster.

I like Couceiro’s art. But his sci-fi setting for Cluster is the same generic sci-fi setting with space troopers as Aliens or Starship Troopers. There’s nothing interesting about it. Some of the stuff with the aliens is good, but Brisson spends his time on the humans, so it’s background.

And I like Brisson’s writing. It’s all very competent, but it’s nothing special. The protagonist has gotten lost so Brisson could get to the space revolutionaries and so on. But he doesn’t spend much time on the revolution or anything else. Cluster is too fragmented, Brisson has too many subplots fueling the main plot. There isn’t enough time to care about anything.

Except the characters he’s already killed. They were more memorable than any of the new ones he’s introducing.

Brisson and Couceiro can keep Cluster running in competence, but they’re getting bad mileage.


Writer and letterer, Ed Brisson; artist, Damian Couceiro; colorist, Cassie Kelly; editors, Cameron Chittock and Eric Harburn; publisher, Boom! Studios.

8house 2 (August 2015)

8house #2: Arclight

It’s another good issue of 8house. Graham fans–especially of Prophet–will find the organic technology somewhat familiar, but with Churchland’s art welcome instead of off-putting. Churchland’s art–with her focus on expression, implied movement and landscapes–make the story feel magical. Even when it’s dangerous, possibly gross or scary. It’s gentle.

And Graham doesn’t get particularly gross. He tells a straightforward story. Arclight and the magician lady are in some trouble. Meanwhile, in a floating city ship (made from some kind of animal), Arclight’s former lady doesn’t much like the lord of the city ship. It’s a royal drama. Instead of taking place in the Middle Ages, however, it takes place in some sci-fi world.

But a lot of the issue is just Churchland’s art. The visible hesitation in some of the lines just makes it all the better. Every panel is so thoughtful.

Really impressive comic.


Arclight, Part Two; writer, Brandon Graham; artist, Marian Churchland; letterer, Ariana Maher; publisher, Image Comics.

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